In a tellurian ripple sense, that’s true. The problem comes when that energy gets spread progressively more ‘around’.
i.e. the only problem with those processes for combatting entropy, is that they proceed by enacting entropy. 18th through early-mid 20th century philosophical developmentalism, of which vitalism was one eventual strand, appealed to the idea of an inherent natural progression of ever-continuing development in principle. Natural entropy, however, undermines this principle. Or, as some economist once quipped while critiquing classic “long-term” economic theories of the time: in the long run, we’re all dead.
(Philosophical developmentalism and its subcategories should be kept quite distinct from biological evolutionary theories; although as a matter of history, that hasn’t always been the case: the topics are clearly similar and they’ve often been conflated. However, to clarify, my comment about entropy has nothing to do with critiquing any form of b.e.t. as a science per se. I am aware that “entropy” has occasionally been brought in against b.e.t., too, but at this time I don’t agree with such criticisms. Tellurian ripple effects are (or anyway seem to me) quite sufficient to power organizational properties in the relatively short and medium terms of biological history, as much so as for powering non-biological crystal organization effects.)
I will add that, speculatively, quantum zero-point energy introduction into the natural system may itself effectively combat natural entropy of the system. A concept that I doubt has gone unnoticed for modern vitalists (if there are any)! (I make use of a combination of those concepts myself in my fantasy novels, where I occasionally have technician characters call the result “vitalistic”. Come to think of it, Philip Pullman’s underlying panpsychism for his Dark Materials trilogy–which he claims to personally believe to be true–involves a variant of vitalism, too: the natural universe is slowly but certainly developing into a sentient entity.) But historically, it was the factoring of entropy that finally denigrated philosophical developmentalism.
The conceptual demolishing of the pantheism variant known as “absolute idealism” was linked to the downfall of phil-dev, too: absolute idealism was itself a variety of phil-dev, appealing to a more-or-less modern version of early Stoicism to try to explain why we could expect ever-continuing progressive development of human society, the human species, etc. One of the big crits was that we couldn’t really expect this absolute Mind to ever really do anything; so why could we expect it to guarantee such a continuing development?! Vitalism seemed a way to safely ‘fix’ and save the optimism of phil-dev without introducing a bothersome Goddy-type entity.
Also, World Wars I and II happened (not to say Korea, Vietnam, and all the other small shooting wars of the 20th century), and people became somewhat less optimistic that there was some inherent automatic “Force” driving natural human development.